Youth Strike 4 Climate – ‘Cause Young ‘Uns are calling out and we live for our future!

It’s over a week since I took part in the Youth Strike 4 Climate and it’s taken me just as long to come down to earth. Let’s just say, I’ve been tired ever since!

That day was a turning point for me, a day that I will look back on and say I stood up for what I believe in, I was there and I did something about it.

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The winter weather has wiped me out !

I’ve had the dreaded winter bug this week and it totally wiped me out. All I can say is, thank heavens for Grandmas, books, scrabble and Dr Who on iPlayer!

Today though, I nipped outside to water my carnivorous plants and it was nice to feel a bit of sun on my face!

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It’s all about the birds, in the greatest citizen science project in the world !!

Being involved in the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch campaign has been a big deal for me this year.

Filming the TV ad, being interviewed for the podcast and posting on my social media sites, have all been amazing opportunities and I have to say, I’m gobsmacked by everyone’s amazing comments.

Binn Green @ RSPB Dovestones

Binn Green is a little gem of a place just up the road from me; where the wildlife is concentrated in one place and the garden birds are just fantastic. You see wildlife there that you don’t see in your everyday garden. Me and my Mum thought it would be great to hold a small community birdwatch and contacted the staff at RSPB Dovestones for permission. Funny enough, it was staff at RSPB Dovestones that signed me up as a junior member years ago.

We met up with Miriam, the visitor experience manager, a few days before, to go over all the details for the event and here’s the thing, it just shows how open to ideas the RSPB are, because the staff were so helpful and sorted really important things out, like the toilets (and believe me, for my mum, they are at the top of the list!)

On the day the weather forecast was dreadful, but what do they say, the sun shines on the righteous!! Well it wasn’t quite sunny, but it was dry and you can’t ask for much more in January! We had hot brews for everyone, with fairtrade hot chocolate served in compostable disposable cups. Grandma brought the most important thing, home-made cake! Miriam and volunteer intern, James came in the RSPB van, armed with spare binoculars and spotter sheets. It was a laid back event and well, we just watched the birds, had a chat, walked around, it was really relaxed.

Members from People First Tameside came; my Mum works there and it’s for people with learning disabilities. For some, this was the first time they had ever done anything like this before. It was important that people were warm and dry and that is was a positive experience, so that they would try it again in the future.  One of the members has size 14 feet and needed some wellies; Mum put a post on Facebook and a few phone calls later, success. Check out those shiny black beauties – covered in mud in seconds!

Some of the kids from Young Operation Farm , my cousin, Francesco and a friend from school came. It was great ‘cos the adults gave us freedom to roam, so we walked together down to this pond area a few times. We all ‘mucked’ in serving brews too.

And here’s what we saw blue, great and coal tits, a nuthatch, goldfinches, chaffinches, greenfinches, siskins, blackbirds, robins, dunnocks, a GS woodpecker and a lesser redpoll. Dave (I think he’s the boss) had the briefest glimpse of a brambling and I was a bit gutted I didn’t see that. But I did have the ‘spotting’ of the day, a mountain hare!

38 people came to the event and not forgetting the 3 dogs – Bella, Buddy & Bailey – who joined us too!

My Aunty Claire led a #BGBWSketchalong check out this vid, well cool and she thought it was rubbish!

Huge thanks to Miriam, Dave and James at RSPB Dovestones, we all had a fantastic time!

At home

The next day, me and my Dad did our own BGBW looking out into our back garden from the comfort of the back bedroom.

We saw 6 sparrows, 2 x great, 2 x blue and 1 x coal tits, a wood pigeon, a GS woodpecker, a nuthatch, sparrows, 4 x jackdaws and a robin.

We prepped like a boss, with a brew, some Jaffa cakes and notepad. I think it’s one of the best BGBW ever, with some brilliant species.

There’s just one thing I need to do now…..

SUBMIT my results !!!!

Taking part in the BGBW has been a fantastic experience and of course it doesn’t mean you just watch birds in January, you can do it anytime. For me, there is a certain feeling with birdwatching, where the beauty and awe of the birds doesn’t just go through your eyes, it goes through your heart.

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How will you #BigGardenBirdWatch ??

A few weeks ago, the RSPB asked me to help them with their Big Garden Bird Watch advertising campaign – what an amazing opportunity – I didn’t have to think twice!

The TV advert was released on Boxing Day and then later on YouTube; I feel really honoured to be part of it. I was also interviewed for January’s Podcast, what a fantastic start to the New Year !!!

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The 12 Days Of Harvest – Merry Christmas Green Fingered Fans

Well, Green Fingered Fans, it’s been an interesting year for us gardeners. With not one, but 2 blasts from the Beast from the East and then a few months later the garden was torched, with a hot, dry summer.

As we come to the end of the year, I’ve made up a daft festive song, celebrating the harvest and later in the blog I’ve wrote some of my RHS Young Ambassador Highlights.

How’s your garden grown this year?!?!?

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December News from me, Green Fingered George

Call the police, somebody stole November! I feel like I blinked and all of a sudden I’ve been catapulted into December!

But I’m not that bothered, ‘cos it’s countdown to CHRISTMAS !!! Continue reading

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Go on plant a tree, it’s #NationalTreeWeek

As the weather turns a little colder and we move into winter, there’s not much going on in the garden right now. But did you know that it’s a great time to get out and plant a tree?

National Tree Week is the UK’s largest annual tree celebration, marking the start of the winter tree planting season (Nov to March each year) Here’s a post from 2017, when me and my Dad planted a small apple tree, to go in the top bit of the garden.
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